HRH Crown Prince Haakon of Norway and Norway’s Minister of Trade and Industry Trond Giske today attended Norway Day celebrations at the World Expo in Korea. Norway’s participation in the World Expo is a partnership between the Norwegian authorities and four private sponsors – Det Norske Veritas (DNV), Höegh Autoliners, Kongsberg and Wilh. Wilhelmsen.
During Norway Day, emphasis was placed on the extensive collaboration between Korea and Norway in a number of areas, including business and culture. The Confederation of Norwegian Enterprise (NHO) and its Korean sister organisation (FKI) arranged a business event that was attended by around 150 Korean and Norwegian participants. Norway’s Minister of Trade and Industry Trond Giske was present, together with prominent Korean politicians.
“Korea is a very important market for Norwegian industry and the seminar held here in Yeosu today shows that there is a lot of commitment to and interest in further developing this collaboration on both the Korean and Norwegian sides. The seminar also showed that Korea and Norway have a number of common interests in exciting areas such as the green shipping, maritime offshore and oil & gas sectors,” he said.
Trade between Korea and Norway has increased considerably over the past decade and, overall, Korea is now Norway’s second-largest trading partner in Asia. Mr Giske believes that the strong Norwegian involvement in the World Expo in Korea may lead to even closer cooperation in the years to come.
“Ever since the first world expo was held in London in 1851, these arenas have created important and international meeting places for nations, organisations and industry in which the spotlight can be put on new products, technologies and expertise. For Norway, participation in the World Expo here in Korea is a signal that Korea is an important partner for both Norwegian industry and the Norwegian authorities,” he said.
The Norwegian business delegation will travel to Seoul on 15 May where seminars will be held focusing on opportunities for Korean and Norwegian industry to cooperate in the offshore wind sector and take part in a maritime collaboration in the Arctic.
The chairman of the Norwegian delegation, Even Aas, expressed his satisfaction with the public-private partnership that forms the basis for Norway’s participation.
“I’m convinced that the cooperation between the Norwegian authorities and industry concerning Norway’s attendance at the World Expo in Korea will send clear signals that both Norwegian authorities and private companies want to focus on Korea as an increasingly important partner country,” he said.
The Norwegian delegation is mainly focusing on green shipping, offshore, clean energy and the environment. Research & development relating to the sea and coastal areas, are also important. The Norwegian pavilion, which was created by Gyro, has been greatly praised for its exciting concept which takes visitors on an interactive journey from Korea to Norway.
DNV, Höegh Autoliners, Kongsberg and Wilh. Wilhelmsen are the main sponsors of the Norwegian delegation to the World Expo in Korea. Korea is an important market for these four companies, whose activities in the Korean market range from maritime and energy-related services to environmental monitoring.
Source: DNV, May 14, 2012; Image: World Expo 2012